This is Sally, Ann’s mom. I talked to Ann on Saturday, December 13. She and Nathan have completed their first week in their new post, and so far, so good!
Ann was excited that “New Puppy” is arriving today. On Saturday, Ann and Nathan had not yet decided on a name for the puppy. The name “Boston” was one possibility. They had considered the name “Asheville”, but Nathan had rejected that name as too feminine a name for a male dog. J
Ann thinks that she and Nathan will have a full and busy Christmas Day. Supposedly, lots of dancing takes place in the village on Christmas. Several families have also invited them to come and eat at their homes. Ann says that they plan to go to church on Christmas Day. Big challenge is that the worship service usually lasts about six hours!
Ann and Nathan are thinking of ways to wish a Merry Christmas to their new friends, Pierre and Rachel. One idea is to invite them and their four children for breakfast on Christmas Day. Rachel has said that she wants to taste American food. Ann may serve French toast. (Is that American?)
While Ann and Nathan will stay in the village for Christmas Day, they are planning a trip to Kara, a nearby city, for December 30-January 2. They will both be able to access their e-mail at that time. Ann hopes to get into Kara about once a month.
Nathan has purchased two rabbits and is talking with Pierre about other animals for the village. Honey is a popular item in the markets, so one idea is to purchase honey bees. Ann says that she and Nathan are moving very slowly in plans for their work. Right now, they are getting to know villagers and are listening to their hopes and dreams. Only later, will they help villagers with specific projects. Big news from Ann is that she will teach English to seventy 8th graders beginning in January. The class will be held for one hour, five days a week. Ann is already observing the class and is working on her class plans. Ann says that teaching English will give her added experience in speaking French, and getting to know the students will be a help to future work with them.
Many thanks for the letters and packages you have sent Ann and Nathan. Ann mentioned that she had received a box full of Luna bars and was enjoying one each morning for breakfast! She and Nathan were also enjoying instant chicken soup for lunch. Perhaps food from home makes it a bit easier to handle the new and stressful meal situations, such as Ann’s discovery of a chicken foot in her dinner bowl one evening last week!